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Asked on - Nov 29, 2023
I worked in company A for 5 years and accumulated PF and then I joined company B and worked for 8 months and accumulated PF. Before I could link these 2 PFs account, I got a job abroad and worked there for 7 years. As my contract is over, I had to return to India. I am presently getting rental income of Rs. 12 Lakhs per annum and paying tax on that. My age is 55 years now. Can I withdraw both the PF amount totalling Rs. 15 Lakhs as on date? Is it taxable? To avoid Income tax, do I need to wait till 60 years of age?
Ans: The retirement age set by the Employees' Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) is 58 years for private sector employees. Therefore, you are not eligible for full PF withdrawal (contribution + pension). However, early retirement age is set at 55 years of age.
The taxability of your PF withdrawal depends on two factors:
• Your service period: If you have completed at least 5 years of continuous service (without any breaks exceeding 6 months), then the entire PF amount (including employer and employee contributions) is tax-free at the time of withdrawal.
• Your contributions made after 1 April 2004: If you have made any contributions to your PF account after 1 April 2004, then the interest earned on those contributions will be taxable.
Moreover, you need to verify the following to ensure the complete PF amount is tax-free:
• As your both accounts (company A and B) are not linked, you need to get them linked to avoid any tax implications.
• Whether there were any breaks exceeding 6 months in your service period.
Waiting until you turn 60 years old will not automatically make your PF withdrawal tax-free. The taxability still depends on your service period and contributions made after 1 April 2004, as mentioned earlier. (more)
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